Mandatory Indoctrination Classes For Unemployed Uyghurs in XinjiangFebruary 07, 2018
Authorities in Kashgar (in Chinese, Kashi) prefecture, in northwest China’s Xinjiang region, are forcing unemployed Uyghur males to attend political indoctrination classes to ensure they avoid “activities that affect social stability,” according to official sources. [A]n officer from the Tomosteng township police station, in Kashgar’s Yarkand (Shache) county, recently told RFA’s Uyghur Service that authorities in the region are additionally requiring idle Uyghurs who are not suspected of committing any offenses to attend political indoctrination classes. Those made to join the classes are mostly Uyghur males aged 16 to 45 who are out of work because of the seasonal nature of their livelihood, such as farmers, said the officer, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
The officer said the daily classes are “different than the re-education camps,” in that students attend three two-hour sessions in the morning, afternoon and evening, but can return to their homes—unlike the camps, where people are held indefinitely. “In the mornings, there is a flag-raising ceremony, after which they attend a political study class using material supplied by the Provincial Propaganda Office,” he said. “Classes are taking place regularly in other townships and villages.” In Tomosteng, “150-200” residents attend classes, he said, adding that the number fluctuates.
Another officer from Tomosteng told RFA that the indoctrination classes are held at local Family Committee offices or Cultural Centers. “The classes were arranged by the Family Committee for people to study the Chinese language, [Communist] party regulations, and so on,” said the officer, who also asked to remain unnamed. “As it is the wintertime [and not farming season], it is also to prevent men from taking part in activities that affect social stability.””